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Basic Techniques for Applying Face Paint


Face paint is a very important part of any great costume and there are some fantastic effects that can be created with a little know how.  Here are a few helpful hints to get you started in the right direction. 

A few tools will make your life easier when face painting.  Have these things nearby before you start;  a few clean jars of water, a towel to dry your brushes, brushes, sponges, and even some unscented baby wipes.  Decide what design you are going to try – there are plenty of great DIY designs online and on YouTube.  Once you have decided on the design make sure you have a basic idea of how you are going to proceed.  Depending on the level of difficulty, it may be a good idea to do a practice run before they day, either on a piece of paper or on a willing person’s face.  This way you will feel more confident on the day.

Before beginning it is recommended that you test the skin for allergies.  Generally, our ranges of face paint and special effects tools are designed specifically to be allergy free, however it is worth testing for sensitivity just in case.  To do this, apply a small amount of face paint to the wrist and let it dry for about 40 mins to an hour.  Before you begin applying any face paint to your skin, ensure that your skin is clean and dry.  It can be very useful to apply a barrier cream or moisturiser to the face.  This will make removing of the paint so much easier.  You may also like to pin any loose hair back so that it is off the face and out of the way.  As a whole our range of face paints can be easily removed should they stain clothing, by simply hand washing them in cold soapy water.  Derivan face paint is designed to swell up and release in soapy water, however the water must be cold.  Using hot water may serve to further drive the stain deeper.

Depending on what effect you are hoping to achieve, there are many ways to apply face paint.  It is a good idea to remove the amount of paint you think you will need from the container to avoid mixing paints.  Do not return any unused paint to the container once you have finished.  If you want to completely cover a large area, like someone’s face – a damp sponge or applicator will make life so easy!  This will allow you to create an even covering of face paint without lots of brush strokes being noticeable.  It is recommended that you apply thin layers and repeat if necessary.  This will prevent the paint from cracking and flaking off once dry. 

Now it’s time for the details!  Use a brush to apply the finer details and accents.  Alternatively, face paint sticks are a fantastic, mess-free method of adding details.  Our range of face and body glitter will create beautiful sparkling accents to fairies and princesses. Mehron’s AdGem with Rhinestones set allows you to add some bling to your designs, and the Detailz range will allow intricate designs to be applied with ease. stocks a great range of face paint colours in different sizes, face paint sticks, glitter face and body paint, black light and glow in the dark face paint, face painting tools and brushes, face paint kits and so much more!  Click here to view our great range of face paint, make up and special effects. 


There are also some fantastic face painting tips and techniques available on You Tube - Derivan have some especially good ones like this one:

Shindigs have also collected some very cool face painting ideas on Pinterest, so be sure to check them out!